‘A desire to know the Bible and the Lord better.’ That is our longing for all who study at WEST. Whether you train for the preaching/pastoral ministry, as many do, cross-cultural mission or home evangelism, knowing the Lord and His Word better are essential requirements alongside the academic teaching of Bible related subjects. And, of course, obedience and prayerfulness are part of knowing the Lord better.
At WEST ‘we profited from … a deeper knowledge of the Bible and growth in our love for the Lord. We also learnt to trust Him for our daily needs’. Danny and Sheila Tanton felt a burden to work amongst deprived exploited street children in Brazil. Their church in Leeds encouraged them to apply for the Bible-based training in WEST. They went to Brazil in 2004 and are now completing their BA with WEST by Distance Learning.
What brought Roxy Stockdale to choose to study at WEST for one year? It was a desire to know the Bible and the Lord better. Her heart was in evangelism but she was unsure where the Lord wanted to use her. A college placement with London City Mission led to her applying to become an LCM missionary. Roxy obtained her one-year Certificate of Higher Education here. She is now enjoying using what she learnt at WEST as a full-time LCM evangelist.
To help students in their spiritual and character development, the School incorporates the following features into the weekly timetable:
The day begins at 8.30am with a time of worship. Students, staff and/or visiting pastors and missionaries open the Word in turn.
An extended College prayer meeting is held on Thursday mornings. After lunch, Tuesday to Friday, WEST students have their own prayer meeting; a staff prayer meeting is held at the same time daily. Additional prayer meetings are also held.
All classes at WEST are opened and closed in prayer by the lecturer or a student.
Students are placed in pastoral groups of 7-10. These are led by a lecturer; time is spent in discipling one another, studying the Word, sharing needs and praying.
In addition to a communal lunch and shared coffee-times, WEST staff are readily available to give spiritual and practical support in a private, confidential context.
Throughout training, students at WEST are expected to commit themselves actively to the life and witness of a local church. Students are also encouraged to maintain and develop links with their home churches. Many churches also look to WEST for preachers, assistance in evangelism and youth/children’s work.